To be an effective advocate, a lawyer must have a broad range of knowledge of the law. He or she must also have excellent analytical, research, writing, and advocacy skills.
The Law School’s curriculum and diverse academic opportunities are designed to give students the skills they need to perform at their best in any setting—be it a large or small firm, public interest organization, government agency, academia, or the judiciary—and in every capacity—as counselor, litigator, mediator, negotiator, legislator, or lobbyist.
After the completion of the required curriculum, J.D. students have a vast domain of courses from which to choose in their remaining years of study. The extensive curriculum is intended to offer students substantial freedom to tailor their programs to their own interests and goals. The faculty recommends that all students pursue a program of study that will give them a strong foundation in the standard subject areas of the law. In addition, some students choose to pursue a particular area of the law in special depth because of particular career inclinations or for the intellectual values associated with specialized study.
To broaden students’ experience beyond the traditional classroom setting, the Law School offers a wide variety of clinical courses, simulation courses, and outside placement options in which students have the opportunity to learn lawyering and other advocacy skills in several contexts. These courses permit students to complement the theoretical study of law with experience in interviewing clients, investigating facts, dealing with adverse parties, contacting government agencies, negotiating on behalf of clients, and participating in real or hypothetical court and administrative proceedings.
Every spring a series of counseling sessions is held to provide students with an overview of course offerings and to assist them in selecting courses and defining their career objectives. The faculty is available throughout the academic year to help students with course and career planning.